Casa Neta, located in the heart of the Flatiron District on East 20th between Broadway and Park Avenue South, provides that great duality in small Mexican plates and an amazing line of Tequila based drinks to enjoy in a wonderful and dark ambiance with your friends and family. I stopped by there over the weekend to experience all of that, and was quite impressed with what Casa Neta had in store for us.
Casa Neta has only been open for about 6 months, yet you don’t seem to get that vibe as the energy inside it reads as very relaxed and chilled as opposed to all over the place as new locations tend to have in its infancy. The dark lighting and bright murals provide a fantastic contrast to each other, as you are led through a gorgeous bar upon entrance and spacious seating options towards the back of Casa Neta. They also have a downstairs lounge called The Sugar Skull Room if you are looking for something a little bit more mellowed out.
The food options at Casa Neta are a bit sparse, as the menu is a one pager that highlights their excellence in small plates, both in the appetizer and entrée version. Their list of tequila based drinks, however, runs the muck as it highlights the variety of ingredients that make up just how delicious they can actually be. I for one, am not the biggest “alcohol” drinker, however if there is one that I can recommend to the masses it would be their Paloma, which is part of their “classic” options at Casa Neta. The Paloma comes with Cimarron Blanco, Tequila, Lime, Grapefruit, Agave and San Pellegrino Pompelmo. There was a fantastic element of spice within this yet the agave and grapefruit provided a much needed sweetness aspect to it that led to it being a good contrast with both.
For the food options, we basically tried what seemed like 75 percent of this part of the menu, and enjoyed each and every part of it. Their Tortilla Chips with housemade salsa is a great way to kick off the evening as it is simplistic but bursting with flavor. The standout dish in the beginner category has to be the Queso Fundido with Chorizo, Poblano, Manchego & Queso Oaxaca. I love when the cheese is so thick that you have to tug on it to have it break free, and this came with some warm tortillas to savor every last bite of. Amazing. The Watermelon & Jicama Salad was out of this world good, as it provided some light flavors and brightness to the table, and the mint-lime vinaigrette paired perfectly with the entire dish.
They have great quesadilla and taco options to devour as well, and I opted for the latter as there is always a great time to enjoy a delicious taco. They have four options to choose from, and we enjoyed their Al Pastor Taco with pineapple & chile de arbol salsa and Short Rib taco with poblanos rajas, manchego and avocado-tomatillo crema. Both taco options were not huge and overpacked as they can be, but they both had an amazing amount of heat, flavor and execution in it that made for a delicious two or three bite meal. Simply delicious.
To finish things off, their Tres Leches Cake or Churro Bowl is a perfect way to finish off an amazing meal. The Churros Bowl is more of a circular type of churros with ice cream in the middle, and the Tres Leches cake was moist and tasty. Overall, an amazing meal that I would easily go back for.
For more information on Casa Neta, check out their official site.